15th of January
I have underlined that every new born Christian can hear from God and we can all prophesy, but all of us do not have a prophetic gift. Even less are called to be a prophet. I am not saying that the prophet is so exclusive, but most Christians have a regular job in the secular world. Only a few are called to one of the fivefold ministries. I have been to countries with a small church on every house-corner. The reason is the fact that so many think that they are called to be pastors. Most of these churches remain small, but the pastor has a title and some income. You must really know if you are called and what you called to be and function in. When God has called you to a ministry, God will equip you and He will give you the anointing for the task and the ministry. Growth will be a natural result.
I will shortly mention the ministry of every believer. Both Matt.28:19-20 and Mark 16:17-18 point out what every believer is called to do. We are all called to make disciples of all the nations, that means your neighbor as well as people far off. They should be baptized and taught. Mark says that these signs should follow the believers; We should cast out demons, speak in new tongues, take up serpents and deadly poison should not harm us. We should lay hands on the sick and they will be well. It naturally doesn’t say that we should play with snakes, nor should we drink poison on purpose.
There are many believers who live in a daily intimate relationship with the Lord. They communicate with the Lord and He with them. That doesn’t mean that they should be messengers of God. Some of them are called to be intercessors and God wants to show them things that are important to pray for or pray through. It is important to know that you should not say to others everything that the Lord says to you.
Paul shows us the difference between speaking in tongues and speaking prophetically in 1. Corinthians 14. Paul says in verse 3+4 that the one who speaks prophetically, he speaks exhortation, edification and comfort to men and he edifies the church. Paul says that we should seek the spiritual gifts and especially the prophetic. You are therefore allowed to ask the Lord to give you this gift, but you cannot ask to become a prophet. God calls you for that and often in your mother’s womb. I am so glad that Paul writes to us the purpose of prophesying. If you prophesy in order to make a person ashamed or depressed, you are on the wrong track. I am aware of the fact that an exhortation does not always make one feel happy, but if it is given in a spirit of love, it is easier to swallow. Faith and love are the two ingredients that must be present in any prophesy. You must have a little extra love when you prophesy something that might seem a little unpleasant at the moment. You have to love the person you prophesy to. That is the will of God.
I have earlier said that a prophesy can be personal or given to a whole congregation. They can be given to an entire nation or groups of the population. Prophesies can be given orally or by writing. They can bespecific or general. I think that if a prophesy is personal, it should be delivered to the person in question. I have often heard prophesies that are given to others and I sometimes find it embarrassing. I do not want everybody to know everything about me. This is meant as a little warning.
To-day, many are writing prophesies on the internet. These can be general and can be for many people. God might want to convey a message to many at a certain time. Television is another media. I have listened to many prophesies, describing certain spiritual fights in the spirit world and how we can win victory and I can recognize the things that are going on in my own life. A prophet can reach many more people to-day than before and this is very positive, but also a little scary. Then you really have to know that you have heard from the Lord. False prophets can do so much more harm to-day since so many can listen to their message. There is a fight for the medias and we really have to pray for the Christian TV-channels. We have to pray for the leaders that they get the gift of discernment. I watch Christian TV and I get encouraged, but also very sorry. Quite a few are playing on people’s emotions and they loose contact with the Word. Experiences are the important thing. Some prophesy what they think people want to hear. These prophesies are home-made. We should receive the prophetic, but we need to test them. They should be tested on the Word of God and the spirit behind it. You have an advantage if you have the gift of discernment. Do not swallow everything that is called Christian. Everything that is not 100 % correct is not necessarily false prophesies, but maybe they have gotten a little out of course. That can be corrected.
I know that I often talk about the prophet as he, but I do not believe that there is any difference between men and women. Both can prophesy and both can become prophets. This is biblical. In the Bible we find female prophetesses and God gave certain women a prophetic duty. Esther is such a woman. She was called to prophesy to her husband, the king, in order to save her people. I refer to Gal. 3:28 as a defense for my view. There we read that we are one in Christ. Some women will meet greater resistance and some prejudiced men might have difficulties in receiving a message given by a woman. This is a problem that the pastors should deal with in their churches, but some of them are also prejudice. We, women, are so dependant on the Lord. He has to open closed doors and we should only walk in ready-made deeds. We are supposed to deliver the message of the Lord and not our own agenda. Women, be humble, but courageous!
I am going back to 1.Corinthians 14 where Paul is giving instructions about the prophesies and the use of speaking in tongues. He says that when we speak in tongues, we speak secrets in the Spirit, but when we prophesy, we talk to men. Paul, himself, spoke more in tongues than most people, but even so, he felt a need for instructions. He says in verse 22: “Therefore tongues are for a sign, not to those who believe but to the unbelievers; but prophesying is not for unbelievers but for those who believe.” Paul continues to teach about the order of a meeting. He says that the tongues should be interpreted. If there is no one to interpret, there should be no message. Two or three prophets can speak, and the others should judge the message. Paul writes two important sentences. One goes like this: “The spirits of the prophets, are subject to the prophets. (32) That means that a prophet has control and is responsible for what comes out of his mouth. He cannot just speak without thinking. The second sentence is taken from verse 33.”For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace.” There had been a lot of chaos and confusions in the meetings and some women could not be silent. They had to be told to be quiet since they disturbed the meetings. That might even happen to-day. I have talked to people who have disturbed the meeting by their “cackling”. We are there to praise God and listen to Him. This disturbs The Holy Spirit. The devil loves confusion and chaos and he tries hard to make us be part of his plans.
WHEN YOU HAVE A PROPHETIC MESSAGE, FOLLOW THE ORDER OF THE CHURCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!